President of the Handball Federation of Nigeria (HFN), Yusuf Dauda, says the Confederation of Africa Handball (CAHB) has lifted the ban on HFN following the payment of its outstanding debt.
CAHB had placed a ban on Nigeria for failure to pay appearance and participation fees in the Africa Men’s Championship held in Egypt, in January 2016.
Dauda, who did not state the exact amount, told NAN in Lagos on Friday that the Ministry of Youth and Sports made the money available during the month, after a persistent plea by the federation.
He said that the payment of the debt recently compelled the continental body to lift the ban on Nigeria, and it opened its chances of participating in CAHB’s organised championships.
“We are affiliated body to CAHB, official body of handball administration in Africa, we participated in the Nation’s Cup and could not fulfill the body’s financial requirement, leading to our ban.
“We communicated the issue to the sports ministry with the banned letter and we sat on its neck all through last year until it responded in December, 2016 and approved the money.
“I am happy to say that we have paid our incurred debt to CAHB, as I speak now; the ban on Nigeria has been lifted so we are now free.
“With this good development, Nigeria has been re-absorbed into the continental body and our chances of participating in CAHB’s organised competition are sure,’’ he said.
The HFN president reiterated its appreciation to the ministry for its remarkable assistance on the issue to the federation.
“The handball family cannot thank the ministry enough because it really came to our rescue at a time it mattered most, it’s a good beginning for us,’’ he said.
Dauda, however, regretted the absence of female national team in CAHB organised draws held in Angola in 2016 ahead of 2017 Women’s Cup qualifiers for 2017 Women World Championship.
“As at the time the draws were held, we were still facing the ban and being an event organised by CAHB, we lost the chance of participation,’’ he explained.
NAN reports that CAHB was founded in 1973 after the 2nd All Africa Games in Lagos, It has 53 member nations of which Nigeria is one. (NAN)